What are the Features of Health Insurance for Self-Employed Workers?
If you’re self-employed in the United States, you might be wondering what your health insurance options are. With health insurance already as complicated as it is in the USA, it’s no wonder many people feel hesitant to ditch their day jobs in favor of being their own boss if it means they have to figure out their own insurance.
Luckily, you have more options than you think. Though you might be responsible for paying many of your own costs, as long as you’re willing to put in the research, you can find a health insurance plan that’s right for you. There are both private and government-funded options to consider based on your situation.
It’s never a good idea to go without health insurance, no matter how healthy you currently are. Protect yourself with the right health insurance for self-employed workers. In this guide, we’ll define the different features of health insurance for those who are self-employed as well as walk through the steps to find the best plan for your situation.
Are You Self Employed?
First, we need to talk about who counts as self-employed in the United States. This isn’t always as cut and dry as it might sound. According to the IRS, you’re considered to be self-employed if you run a trade or business as a sole proprietor, contractor, or partner. You might also have a part-time business.
Essentially, if you’re not being paid by a full-time employer through which you’re offered benefits, you’re a self-employed worker. However, you might still be able to get health insurance through a traditional employer if you’re married to someone who has health insurance through an employer. If you’re employed part-time or working remotely as an employee, you don’t count as self-employed.
Types of Health Insurance for Self-Employed Workers
There are two options you’ll primarily be faced with if you’re self-employed. You’ll either buy health insurance for yourself with no employees or you’ll buy insurance for yourself and your employees if there’s anyone who works under you. So what are the features of health insurance for self-employed workers in the U.S. today?
If you don’t have any employees, you can enroll through the Health Insurance Marketplace. This is a government-hosted marketplace for finding flexible, quality coverage. Your state might also offer options depending on where you’re located.
Otherwise, if you have even one employee other than yourself or a family owner, you might be eligible to use the SHOP marketplace for small businesses. This is a way to offer coverage not just for yourself, but also for any employees you choose to cover.
Finally, you can purchase group health insurance even if you have no employees. If you choose this route, you’ll essentially be purchasing a plan from a private healthcare provider, and you’ll likely want to work with an agent to help navigate this process. Your state will have a different definition of what it means to be a “small group” for insurance purposes.
Choosing the Right Self-Employed Plan
Now that you know your options as a self-employed individual, it’s time to talk about choosing the best plan. If you’re not familiar with different insurance plan types, this can be a confusing process. Consider these questions below to guide your search:
Final Thoughts About Self-Employed Insurance
Now you’re ready to start your health insurance search as a self-employed person. Don’t let the stigma around insurance intimidate you from taking matters into your own hands. As long as you focus on what you really need and putting your health first, you’ll find the right plan for you.
Remember to check your state and local laws about health coverage, especially if you have any employees working under you. If you’re struggling to find the right option, consider talking to an agent who can guide your search.
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